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Ultrasound is a medical diagnostic practice that has been fully utilize for the purpose of monitoring pregnancy. It is a medical test wherein an image of internal organs or, in the case of pregnant women, the fetus is produced by a machine that processes high frequency sound waves. The traditional procedure of ultrasound, or sonogram, can only give a 2D image with restrictive monitoring capabilities that only a trained sonographer can identify with. The goal of the procedure is to study the baby’s development, determine its gestational age and even spot abnormalities, though only a slight indication can be garnered from 2D scanning. This is why, presently, there came a more effective ultrasound technology. It is named 4D ultrasound, with time being the fourth dimension. With the addition of time as a component 4D ultrasound enables the production of a live video of an unborn baby, giving the parents a preview of their little miracle.

Doctors do not generally order the undertaking of 4D ultrasound to an expecting mother. A physician who specializes in ultrasonography will more probably instruct the mother to take the examination at a private ultrasound business to check the baby’s development inside the mother’s tummy. The procedure starts with the application of a conductive gel on the mother’s abdomen. This is where a transducer will be glided over to do the scanning. The sound waves that are reflected to different angles will then be translated by a sophisticated sonogram machine and send the processed image to a monitor. In the visualization, the baby’s anatomy will be clearly visible. It allows the observation of the baby’s facial features and even small movements such as yawning and blinking. The image captured renders a real time footage making the examination faster than that of a standard sonography procedure. As a plus, the mother can have a keepsake, a picture or a video of the baby inside her womb.

It should be noted that some would argue that there may be risks related to the procedure. For example, to produce the high quality image, the machine used needs to use high level energy in the process. There is no concrete evidence though and the issue continues to be a mere assumption. That said, 4D technology is still an advisable procedure for mothers who want to get an early look at their babies.

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